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A diesel uses a different procedure. You'll need a tool to hold the camshaft pulley parallel to the top of the cylinder head. The timing mark to set TDC for piston #1 is located on top of bell housing. The pointer must be aligned on the diamond cut on the flywheel. A VW/Audi setting bar tool #2065A is needed to lock the camshaft in position. Lock the injection pumpin position using the special lock pin (VW/Audi special tool no. 2064). Caution: If the drive belt is broken or has jumped time, do not attempt to lock the sprocket at this time!!! You will also need VW/Audi special tool no. VW210 to measure belt tension between camshaft sproket and injection pump sprocket. So good luck.
The trannys on the vw's are weird, they actually have a brain which tells the tranny what to do, when to switch gears under the driving conditions etc. Is thair a check engine light on? when is the last time you had a tranny service done on it? Also, it sounds even weirder, but is your alternator ok, is it putting out the proper volts to the battery? the alternator not charging the system can lead to alot of weird acting issues.